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Special Needs

Y Friends

This program provides an opportunity for adult members with special needs to focus on exercise and reinforce healthy life choices. Participants enhance their socialization, organizational and other daily living skills. Activities include supervised exercise programs, problem solving, team building, crafts, holiday celebrations, field trips and community service projects.

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Featured Event: Day at the Diamond

Day at the Diamond is a yearly event featuring our Y Friends, their family members, and community members to a fun day of baseball and hot dogs at our Central YMCA baseball field!

Featured Activity: Cardio Drumming

A popular, energetic exercise class using a variety of percussion instruments.  Participants learn to coordinate movement with music and perform routines which are featured at Y events throughout the year.

Want to Know More?

Questions or interested in joining the program? Contact [email protected].


“Y Friends has been an important part of my son’s life for many years. The group has provided social, skill development and athletic activities that he enjoys and that enrich his life. There is no other program that provides him such opportunities.” – Family Member of Y Friend

Frequently Asked Questions

Over 18 and out of school.

Participants provide their own transportation, either through the City of Arlington’s HandiTran service or rides from family members.  

North YMCA (1005 Skyline Dr, Arlington, TX 76011); Tuesday through Friday from 1:00 – 3:00 pm.

Supervised exercises, field trips, life skills, arts and crafts, learning activities.
In person interview with family, participant and program staff.
$39.99 per month, which includes a full AMA YMCA membership.
Maximum of 20 participants.
AMA YMCA employees, volunteers and trained instructors.

Unable to participate in mild exercise; any condition not controlled by medication; unable to communicate needs; etc. 

Barbara Hopson, Special Friends Coordinator, Central YMCA 

[email protected] or Call 817.274.9622 ext. 2301